July 28, 2017

 In MOA Artwork of the Week



Hoshi (Attr.), Stars, 1967, intaglio, 6 x 4 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art.
Dutch painter Judith Leyster was born on this day in 1609. Leyster was a relatively unknown artist until the late 1800s, as many of her works were misattributed to Frans Hals or to her husband, Jan Miense Molenaer. It was in the 1890s when a Dutch curator and art collector attributed seven works to her, all bearing her unique monogram signature of “JL*”. Her signature was a play on words—”Leyster” meant “lead star” or “North Star.”

Judith Leyster was one of the first women artists admitted to the Haarlem Guild of St. Luke, a prestigious artist guild in the Netherlands during the Dutch Golden Age. She acquired many pupils and is considered once of the most important artists of the era.

Today’s Artwork of the Day pays homage to Leyster’s name and her incorporation of the star into her signature. This artwork is a piece by a contemporary Japanese artist, Hoshi, whose name also translates to “star.”
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